Palatine Park District Preschool Teachers: Building a Strong Community From the Ground Up

September 8, 2021

The Palatine Park District Preschools are a community staple bringing smiles, learning, and lifelong friendships to the village of Palatine for years. Our Play-Based Learning environment and professional, friendly teachers hold a special place in the hearts of the students and their families. So much so, that many of the District’s Preschool Teachers are parents of former students. They were so impressed by the program that they wanted to get involved to continue the Park District’s mission of enriching Palatine’s community of young minds.

For teachers like Julie Johnson, Tracy Seebacher, and Juanita Wundsam, whose children all attended Palatine Park District Preschool programs, applying for a Preschool Teacher position seemed only natural. All three love working with children and the position provided the perfect schedule to still be involved with their own children’s school activities while being able to give back to the community. “As a parent whose kids were in District 15 it works perfectly because the schedules are aligned. You will always have the same days off as your children, you will even have some additional days off, so you don’t have to worry about childcare. It’s the perfect transition if you are ready to get out of the house and do a little teaching again,” said Johnson who is going into her ninth year of teaching Preschool.

Being able to contribute to the community that helped raise their own children was also a driving force to become involved. Seebacher, who is going into her seventh year of teaching Preschool, said, “The community has been very important to us, we raised our family here.” Wundsam, who has taught preschool for 21 years said, “Being a Preschool Teacher is a rewarding job. I feel like I am actually giving back to the community while enjoying the young minds that are so willing to learn. Working for the Palatine Park District actually makes it that much more fantastic!” Preschool provides most children with their first school experience, which can have a huge impact on how they view education going forward. Johnson explained that serving as a child’s first teacher is a very rewarding experience. “I feel like my role as a Preschool Teacher is to provide a positive first school experience for the kids and it’s exciting and fulfilling to see how they grow throughout the year socially, emotionally, academically, and see them thrive.”

Working as a Preschool Teacher for Palatine Park District entails helping to build a solid and successful community from the ground up. It is much larger than teaching ABCs and 123s. It includes teaching children to treat their peers with respect and training young minds to crave knowledge. Lifelong skills that Seebacher said they will use forever.

There is never a dull day at Palatine Park District Preschools where teachers are given the freedom to bring their own ideas and themes to lessons. “Teachers at our Preschools are a team, we work together to bring Play-Based Learning to our classes, making for an enriching experience for the children,” said Wundsam. This makes it easy to love coming to work every day.

“Every day is a new and fun learning adventure. Myself and my coworkers, we just love what we do, and I feel like our enthusiasm really rubs off on our students and our families and we’re just excited to come to work every day,” said Johnson.

Having a job where there is a rarely a bad day is a truly special thing and teaching at Palatine Park District Preschools provides just that. “When you leave work, you can’t help but feel happy and uplifted. There is very seldom a day where I don’t leave working being like, ‘That was a really fun day, really good day,’” said Seebacher.

Palatine Park District is currently hiring a Preschool Teacher. Preschool runs September-May and the position we are looking to fill runs Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 8:30am-12:00pm. Palatine Park District Preschools follow District 15’s holiday/day off schedule, making it a great position for parents with children in District 15. Benefits of working part-time for Palatine Park District may include fitness memberships and classes, and recreation programs. Apply online today at palparks.org/Teach and Live the Parks and Rec Life!

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